CONSTRUCTIVES - 17 Oct 2011

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The world is full of good news. The following are just a few ...

With an address by Mexico's President Felipe Calderón highlighting a theme of brotherly unity and peace, the 16th Pan American Games opens in this year's host city of Guadalajara, Mexico, bringing together top athletes from 42 nations in friendly competition for the next two-and-a-half weeks.

In a vote held to address Chilean citizens' requests for changes in the country's educational system, Prensa Latina news agency reports that 93% voted in favor of free public education, with responsibilities to be transferred from municipalities to a centralized department.

The Singaporean Red Cross donates an initial US$156,000 to Cambodia and Thailand for emergency flood relief, with a goal of raising more than US$1 million through a public campaign continuing through November 30, 2011.

The government of Myanmar, also known as Burma, holds first-ever peace talks with the Mong La group at Kengtung, where both sides formally agree to a cease fire as well as the reopening of liaison offices and restoring of staff for improved health, education and other services to the region.

UK-based international contemporary art magazine ArtReview names Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei, whose expressions include sculpture, architecture, photography and film, as this year's most important art figure in the world.

Prime Minister of Montenegro Igor Lukšić and United Arab Emirates Economy Minister Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri sign agreements to further shared investment and trade exchange between their countries in the areas of industry, agriculture and tourism.

In an effort to assist Pakistan following a second year of major flooding, Japan's International Cooperation Agency purchases US$450,000 in necessary items from within the country for distribution to those in need while announcing the Japanese government's additional US$10 million donation as relief aid.

Bosco Verticale, designed by Italian architect Stefano Boeri to feature 27-storeys of terraced trees, is now under construction in Milan, Italy, with plans to fulfill the vision of becoming the first ever vertical forest in the world.
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